The 30 Best Companies For Diversity

When it comes to minority representation, these corporations mean business

fourth largest food services company in the country, earning $5 billion in revenues last year with an overall employee base of 138,144, of which 18,707 are African American.
Strengths indicate diversity areas in which the company ranked among the top 20 respondents.
Strengths

  • SR. MANAGEMENT
  • BOARD OF DIRECTORS

STARWOOD HOTELS & RESORTS WORLDWIDE INC. Location: White Plains, NY Type of Business: Hotels and resorts Diversity Contact: Ana Mollinedo, VP, Diversity, Communications & Community Affairs
At Starwood Hotels & Resorts, diversity is woven into the fabric of the organization, from its employee base to its leadership team to its vendors. “We measure diversity throughout our human resources processes, which of course are tied to compensation and bonuses,” says Mollinedo. “Success is driven by the fact that key stakeholders are partners and sponsors of threading diversity and inclusion in [this] company.” Two of BE‘s “75 Most Powerful Blacks in Corporate America” are among Starwood’s top executives.
Starwood is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world, with 120,000 employees and more than 750 properties in over 80 countries. In 2003, the Minority Business Enterprise program was created to encourage all North American properties and regional offices to give minority suppliers a fair share of opportunities.
“Up until then we had someone handling procurement, but no formal program to speak of,” Mollinedo explains. “We started creating internal tools to track and create a database of minority suppliers,” she adds, noting that it was a cross-functional operation from the CEO on down. In addition, Starwood has started a second-tier program, holding its major vendors accountable for doing business with minority-owned firms. Starwood contracts products and services for advertising, food and beverage, cleaning, office supplies and equipment, and landscaping.
One of Starwood’s MBEs, Royal Cleaning Service Inc., began as a one-man operation 13 years ago. Today, the New York firm has 73 employees who service hotels, residences, business, and government agencies. At the National Minority Supplier Development Council’s 2004 annual gala, Royal’s founder, Joseph Crowder, first learned of Starwood’s MBE program. He was initially contracted to clean New Jersey’s Westin Princeton Hotel and later the Sheraton. “They back their MBEs … those who show progress. They are willing to give them additional work quickly,” Crowder explains. “That is a big plus for them.” –Carolyn M. Brown
Strengths

  • SUPPLIER DIVERSITY
  • SR. MANAGEMENT
  • EMPLOYEE BASE

EASTMAN KODAK CO. Location: Rochester, NY Type of Business: Photographic Equipment Diversity Contact: Essie Calhoun, VP, Chief Diversity Officer & Director of Community Affairs
Eastman Kodak Co. has a substantial number of ethnic minority employees (close to 25%), including its recently appointed CEO, Antonio Perez. Roughly 10% of its employees are black. Eastman Kodak has a number of initiatives to maintain diversity in its senior management ranks, including a succession planning process that links senior executives with diverse middle managers. Initiatives that maintain supplier diversity are also in place. “We expect to place 11.5% of domestic purchasing with minority-owned businesses and 12% of domestic purchasing with women-owned businesses by 2008,” says Calhoun.
Strengths

  • SUPPLIER DIVERSITY
  • SR. MANAGEMENT
  • BOARD OF DIRECTORS

FANNIE MAE Location: Washington, DC Type of Business:

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